Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Sweet home Alabama

I have to say that I used to have some fear and trepidation about living in Alabama. There's such a stigma about this State. But something today reminded me why I have enjoyed my time in the "Heart of Dixie."

It was my first time going to a certain county (I won't say which one -- and you'll see why) for court. We were going for a 9 a.m. hearing on a motion in a case that we've been working on. I was excited, because one of my attorney-bosses was going to be filing a motion with the Court that I had written (hey, it's always exciting to know that you're actually getting to contribute something to the betterment of society, e.g., keeping a bad guy in jail).

I was sitting (on the inside of the bar!) with my attorney-boss while we talked with one of the local district attornies about the case in which my attorney-boss was about to argue the motion. All of a sudden, a deputy strolled out and said, "Hear ye, hear ye, the Circuit Court of _____ County, Alabama is now in session, the Honorable _____ _____ presiding. God save Alabama and this honorable court."

That, in and of itself, wasn't that strange -- the tradition of opening court with the ancient "oyez" (Law French for "listen!"), or in this case an anglicized "hear ye", along with a invocation is certainly not new (indeed, it recalls the days when a herald would go in front of the King to announce that "His Majesty" will now hear petitions).

When I looked up, though, to see the judge come in, my jaw dropped wide open, and I was so transfixed that I forgot I was standing up (I quickly sat down when I noticed that everyone else had).

What, pray-tell, befuddled me so greatly? What awesome spectacle stole my reason and left my dumbfounded?

Nothing less than the robe that the learned judge was wearing. It was a typical, black judicial robe. But, embroidered on the chest of the robe, in shining golden thread, were all ten of the Ten Commandments:

Sweet home, Alabama!

LISTENING TO: what else -- Lynyrd Skynryd


At 6:57 PM, Anonymous David Sawyer said...

"Alabama: Frozen in Time since 1954"

At 9:15 AM, Anonymous Adam Mudge said...

What a state!

At 8:37 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

only in 'bama!!!


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